A "theatre" of conflict is the geographic place where military events occur. World War II had two primary theatres: The European Theatre and the Pacific Theatre.

The Pacific Theatre of World War II was largely defined by the territories of the Empire of Japan. At its peak, the empire stretched throughout eastern China, southeast Asia, the islands of Oceania, and even the Aleutian islands in North America. 

Click through this timeline to see how battles dotted the Pacific Theatre between 1931 and 1945, and how the U.S. entry into the war following the attack on Pearl Harbor radically altered the war’s progress.

Visit our interactive timeline of the European Theatre to better appreciate how the conflict truly was a world war. To interact with a comprehensive timeline of both theatres, click here